Summer daze

I hate posts like this, the “I’ve been super lazy, er, busy and haven’t posted in ages and now I’m going to try to sum up everything that we’ve been doing that’s kept me from posting in one giant list” posts. The truth is, summer has fallen over our house like a heavy blanket, coating us with schedule-free comfort.

M finished kindergarten, and I didn’t even cry. Much. Can he possibly be turning 6 this week? Hardly! But he will anyway, a polite six-year-old who regularly reminds meto pray, who is helpful around the house and almost too big for me to carry. He’s started black belt club in tae kwon do, which means that we pay more money and he gets training in nunchuks. This seems like a bad idea, but for a kid who, one year ago, would not even think of sparring with another child and couldn’t do a single push-up, it has brought out a whole new sense of ability of which I’m endlessly proud.

K finished dance with a series of evening recitals. I almost backed out of these performances, feeling that they were impossibly overwhelming for a four-year-old and would only end in disaster. But I’m learning to be shocked as a mom–or maybe learning that my expectations aren’t always reliable. K performed like a champ, standing on stage with ease, leaping and pointing and ta-da-ing as she learned, and even keeping composed when things went awry. And, not that I’m biased, she might well have been the cutest green sequined frog you ever did see. She lets me fix her hair at least half the time now, which makes her look her age, which is of course older than she ever is in my mind. She also takes gymnastics for the summer, a good match for her climbing and balancing skills. Plus it gives me 45 minutes to read with M uninterrupted. The Magic Tree House is our current favorite.

Otherwise, it’s a lot of hanging around the house and tackling the little projects that have waited ever since we moved in–cleaning out cabinets and shelves and spots that became dumping grounds for miscellaneous things, mostly. We did one short camping trip. It was even shorter when I realized I’d failed to pack pants for the wee ones, kind of a deal breaker when it’s under 50F at night. And did you know it could take 2 hours to boil water? Did you also know that brownies make an excellent appetizer? Camping is all about improvisation, I suppose. At least the kids had fun, though I still can’t pry K away from her sleeping bag. There’s been a lot of swimming, too. Both kids are so independent, and they’re even learning to snorkel in preparation for our family vacation later this summer. I think M might even be better at it than I am. And grilling. Did I mention that it’s regularly near 90 at our house? Good thing I like heat!

The only downside is the quick passage of time, always a sore spot with me. In June, the summer seemed to stretch out so blissfully, and now, already July 5, I’m realizing how quickly even wide open days can slip right through our fingers. There was one whole week that someone asked me about and I couldn’t come up with a reasonable explanation for how we spent it. I wonder if we’re wasting them, squandering them so carelessly on nothing whatsoever. But then again, in contrast with the regimented schedule of the school year, I kind of can’t imagine telling them that we have to do this and that. And really, if I’m lucky enough to have kids happy and content to play at home with each other, I might as well enjoy that for all it’s worth.

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